Changing Your Company Year-End

Some business owners may wonder why they may want to consider changing their company year-end ...

It is a little known fact that a company can shorten the length of its accounting period whenever, and as often, as they like. But it can only lengthen it 5 years from the date it was last extended. If you want to extend your accounting period, ensure you have a valid reason.

A normal company year-end is 12 months from the date of incorporation. So if you incorporated on 1st January (or any time in that month), then your year-end is normally 31st January the following year!

The first set of accounts is due at Companies House 21 months after the date of your incorporation. Following that, accounts should be filed 9 months after the year-end. Some businesses (such as those in retail and restaurants) also file accounts up to a date within 7 days of its registered accounting date, although this is becoming less common now as accounting software becomes more efficient and easy to use.

However, a company can change its first accounting period to any length, as long as it's between 6 and 18 months, which means that you can choose any company year-end, no matter when the incorporation date.

So remember, if the accounting period is changed, the company accounts will be due for filing either 21 months from incorporation or 3 months after the new accounting period, whichever is the later date.

"How do you actually change the accounting date?"

Compete form AA01 and submit it to Companies House; however, it is important to note that it can not be changed if accounts are already overdue so you must ensure Companies House receives the form within the allowable period for submission.

If you feel inspired to find out more about anything I've said here, do call me on 01908 774320 or leave a comment below and I'll be in touch as soon as I can.